Engine maker Briggs & Stratton Corp. said Wednesday that it is raising its quarterly dividend by a penny, to 12 cents.

Briggs & Stratton's next dividend is payable Oct. 1 to shareholders of record on Aug. 20. The company said it is raising its dividend because of its improved financial performance despite the weak economy.

Briggs & Stratton has announced the elimination of around 1,200 jobs in 2012, or about 18 percent of its workforce. The company has been cutting back because the soft housing market in the U.S. and lower demand for lawn and garden products in Europe have hurt its results. The weaker European economy has also cut into demand.

In January Briggs & Stratton said it will close a plant in Tennessee and another facility in the Czech Republic, eliminating about 767 jobs. And in April it said it will cut about 460 jobs by eliminating around 10 percent of its salaried positions and moving some production from a plant in Alabama to company facility in China and to third-parties in Southeast Asia.